Both pilots and companies are navigating a thin line between security and innovation. Host Grant Guillot talks with leaders, influencers, and experts across the drone industry to guide us through the complex web of technology and policy in the United States.
Drone delivery isn’t just a far-off possibility. It’s become safer, more efficient, and scalable. That’s what DroneUp did with its partnership with Coca Cola. Host Grant Guillot welcomed the company back to Drones in America to discuss the project. CEO Tom Walker and new Chief Strategy Officer, Carl Smit, shared details of the campaign.
Before talking about the partnership, Guillot introduced Carl Smit, a new hire for the company. He has an impressive resume as a Navy SEAL and held retail marketing roles for Apple, Under Armour, and Verizon.
“I was involved in omnichannel consumer experiences and did some product development world. I always had an interest in drones, and when I met Tom, I jumped at the chance to work with DroneUp,” he said.
DroneUp has already pushed the industry forward, working with Walmart to deliver at-home COVID-19 self-collection kits. The Coke partnership moved the drone delivery conversation forward.
Coke launched a new product, Coke with Coffee, and wanted to do something unique. “It’s a neat way to launch in today’s environment, where big events aren’t possible. We delivered the new product via drone in Coffee County, Georgia. It showed the safety and efficiency of drones and had a huge media impact,” Walker explained.
The campaign illustrated that their drones can deploy from higher altitudes and carry greater weight and size. They delivered to homes, small businesses, a hospital, and city offices.
It also proved scalability, something that’s been challenging in the industry. Walker noted, “You can scale from a foundation of regulatory understanding and operational specifications.”
In looking to what’s next for drones, Smit added, “The drone market explosion is similar to the cell phone market in the 90s, and telecom does have interest in the industry looking down the road at drone human taxis and retail delivery.”
Walker indicated more big things for the company this year. “We were able to deliver with accuracy in this example. The next leap will be even greater.”